Sharon Markovsky was an MBA student in a personal branding course I taught at The University of Nevada, Reno in January, 2010. In just eight short months, Sharon has created what I think is a very effective personal brand.
Sharon blogs regularly at Sharon Markovsky’s Practical Discussions of Marketing, producing valuable content that makes her a resource for people interested in marketing and market research. Sharon then takes the content of her blog and shares it with her Twitter followers. Sharon has close to 1,000 followers and she appears on 74 lists, many of which are devoted to marketing. On LinkedIn she has over 500 connections, 4 recommendations, and is active in a number of groups related to marketing. Sharon’s activity on LinkedIn provided the inspiration for my blog post last month on how a LinkedIn discussion can affect your personal brand.
By any measure, Sharon is doing a great job with her personal brand. But the most important thing Sharon has done in the 8 months since she took my class and started her brand online is she has not quit! I’ve taught personal branding to almost 170 students since the summer of 2009 and of those 170 students, almost all of them quit as soon as class was over. Only about 3% of the students that learn how to blog and tweet in my class remain active in personal branding one month after class.
Most of your peers are not willing to do what it takes to be truly remarkable. That’s good news for you. The student branding bar is so low that it won’t take much for you to establish a distinctive personal brand that clearly separates you from your peers. I firmly believe that the only way you can lose at personal branding is to quit.
Are you a quitter, or do you have what it takes to be truly remarkable?
Bret Simmons is an Associate Professor of Management in the College of Business at the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR), where he teaches courses in organizational behavior, leadership, and personal branding to both undergraduate and MBA students. He has a Ph.D. in Business Administration from Oklahoma State University. Bret practices personal branding at his website Positive Organizational Behavior where he blogs about leadership, followership, and personal branding. His purpose is “to change your mind about the value of partnering with others to build healthy, responsible organizations where everyone can thrive.” You can also find Bret on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.